This isn't exactly what I was expecting when I began the audio, but I'm happy I read it. The writing world lost quite a talented writer when Marina diThis isn't exactly what I was expecting when I began the audio, but I'm happy I read it. The writing world lost quite a talented writer when Marina died. I enjoyed quite a few of her fictional pieces, but her non-fiction is my favorite in this collection. There are a couple essays I'd like to pull and use in my classroom as mentor texts and pieces to make us think more deeply about our purpose, our actions, and our futures. Review to come....more
If more memoirs were written like Rapture Practice by Aaron Hartzler, I would read more memoirs. His debut novel isReview originally posted at YA Love
If more memoirs were written like Rapture Practice by Aaron Hartzler, I would read more memoirs. His debut novel is humorous, heartfelt, and honest.
Something I like best about Aaron’s story is that it exposed me to a world I’m not very familiar with. I did have a friend in elementary school who was a very strict Baptist, but even her lifestyle wasn’t as extreme as Aaron’s. I grew up in a religious home, so I understand and appreciate the importance of it, but reading about Aaron’s family and their beliefs was eye-opening and also frustrating. I can’t imagine getting into an argument with my dad about whether or not I wore socks to church. My parents were strict about the music I listened to, mostly when I was younger, but I was never made to feel guilty or ashamed about it. Aaron Hartzler does a wonderful job helping the reader understand where his parents are coming from, but he also does a fantastic job making the reader feel for him. I can’t tell you how many times his parents made me angry while reading this memoir. I will admit, however, that I sometimes felt bad for being angry at them since I know they felt they were doing what’s right.
I hope some of my students will read Rapture Practice. First, it will most likely be an eye-opening experience for them just as it was for me. Second, I want them to read more memoirs and this is a great book to get them started and help them understand what a memoir is. Third, Aaron Hartzler’s story will probably resonate with many of them. Even if they aren’t living in a strict religious household, I’m confident many of them are questioning religion, rebelling against their parents, figuring out where they fit in the world, etc. They’ll likely find a piece of themselves in this book.
I do, however, wish Rapture Practice included more about Aaron realizing that he’s gay. It’s one of the reasons why I wanted to read his memoir. Unfortunately, this part of his life is brought up, but it’s not as fleshed out as I wanted. I’m assuming his real revelation happened after this book ends, but I’m not entirely sure about that. I’d love it if he chose to write a second memoir which goes into more detail about his self-discovery and how that affected his life and family. I’d read another one of Aaron Hartzler’s books regardless of what it’s about.
I know our reading lists are long, but I recommend taking the time to read Rapture Practice. It’s easy and enjoyable to read; it’s written very well. Aaron Hartzler is an author I’ll be looking out for in the future....more